Woods' decision personal, but Parry critical

BY foxsports • December 13, 2009

John Daly has dealt with his own marital problems and personal issues over the years, so he reached out to Tiger Woods as the accusations of infidelity piled up.

``He just didn't want to talk to anybody,'' Daly said.

These are tumultuous times for the world's No. 1 player, who announced Friday he is taking an indefinite break to attempt to save his marriage following two embarrassing weeks filled with allegations of extramarital affairs.

Golf is about to be without its biggest superstar again.

``I'm in shock over it all, a lot of our players are in shock,'' Daly said at the Australian PGA on Saturday. ``I'm not happy with the way some of our players have responded - that's their way of getting back because they know they can't beat him at golf.

``They always say there is no one bigger in golf than the game itself. But Tiger is.''

The PGA Tour also was without Woods for much of last season while he recovered from reconstructive knee surgery that kept him out a total of eight months, and television ratings dropped 50 percent.

``Indefinite is a scary word,'' former U.S. Open champion Geoff Ogilvy said. ``That's not good for us. But I'm sure he'll get it worked out.''

Craig Parry was finishing his third round at the Australian PGA when he heard about Woods' decision to step aside.

Parry, a friend of Woods who lives nearby in Windermere, Florida, was hopeful the time off would be good for him and critical of the problems that led to his absence.

``What he did was totally wrong,'' Parry said. ``And he's got no one to blame except himself. You can look at other people, but he's the one who's got to look in the mirror.''

Parry caught up with Woods when they played the Australian Masters in Melbourne last month - Woods' final tournament before his car crash and subsequent accusations of infidelity. They played a practice round and the first two tournament rounds together.

``It's his personal life, so that's up to him if he wants to get his family life in order,'' Parry said of Woods deciding to take time off. ``It's a hard thing to come back from.''

Former top-ranked LPGA star Annika Sorenstam told the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet she was saddened by the news.

``I think this whole thing is tragic,'' she said. ``I have followed Tiger via the press, but haven't spoken directly to him. We used to train together, but both myself and Tiger have been very busy lately and therefore haven't seen, or heard from each other as frequently.''

Daly cautioned Woods and his wife, Elin, to remain together for the right reason.

``You don't stay married for the kids or the money,'' he said. ``You stay together because you love each other.''

Woods is one of the world's most famous athletes. Earlier this year, he became the first athlete to surpass $1 billion in career earnings, according to Forbes magazine. His sponsors include Nike, Gillette, AT&T, Gatorade and Tag Heuer.

``One thing people don't understand is that we're human,'' Heat guard Dwyane Wade said in Miami. ``You're not born with a menu on how not to do things wrong. You're going to make mistakes like every human being. It's just unfortunate that you're in the public eye so much and a lot of people get hurt by it.''

Bobcats forward Stephen Jackson wished Woods the best.

``Sometimes you just got to take time out to reflect on what's more important, and that's family,'' he said after Charlotte's 104-85 loss in San Antonio.


AP Sports Writer Tim Reynolds in Miami and Associated Press Writer Paul J. Weber in San Antonio contributed to this report.